5 Minutes with Fiacre from The Boulevard Hotel

5 minutes with … a 5 minute/5 question interview with great beer loving people

This edition of 5 minutes with features Fiacre Mulhall, Assistant Manager at The Boulevard Hotel …

5 minutes with … a 5 minute/5 question (or in this case 7!) interview with great beer loving people

This edition of 5 minutes with features Fiacre Mulhall, Assistant Manager at The Boulevard Hotel

Fiacre, aka Fi, and I worked together at The Brisbane Hotel many years ago. One of our first meetings, if not the very first, was at a Daft Punk concert. We’ve camped at Southbound, we’ve gone to The Blue Mountains and laughed together at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

(and remembering all of this just sent me on a little time travel via photographs for the last twenty minutes!)

Anyway, Fi phoned me up a while ago and was very excited about an event he wanted to host at The Boulevard – a beer market in the beer garden. Happy Days!

Brews in the Beergarden Market

The Boulevard Hotel – Corner The Boulevard and Howtree Place, Floreat – see map

Happening this Saturday (11 October) it’s an afternoon showcasing some of Fi’s favourite local breweries and cideries. But of course you don’t want to be looking all scruffy when you’re tasting such wonderful craft beer so Weston’s Barbershop will be on site for all your grooming needs, well almost all of them. Meanwhile, in the hot department there will be Dr Paul’s Hot Sauce to test your fiery palates.

If you’ve not been to The Boulevard before this event would be a fantastic way to get acquainted. A big beautiful modern pub with warmth and personality and a kick ass outside area perfect for markets. I’m really looking forward to this event.

What was your epiphany beer?

That would be Little Creatures Bright Ale.  Before I moved to Perth in 2008, I really only drank mainstream lagers and pilsners.

In my first few days here, a mate took me on the obligatory pilgrimage to Freo and the Little Creatures Brewery.  That first sip of Bright Ale blew my mind.

It had so much fruit and complexity compared to what I usually drank. I never knew that beer could have so much going on.

What do you hope your beer list says about The Boulevard Hotel?

I hope it says that we are a pub that is serious about craft beer.  We have so many outstanding breweries and cider makers on our doorstep and try to support them wherever we can.  We are also very proud of being a pub and that fantastic local and international beers like [Feral] Hop Hog and Founders All Day IPA live happily in the fridge beside pub staples like Swan Draught.

Blvd Beer Menu

How often do you update the beer list?

We update 3 to 4 times a year which allows us to work with the seasons.  We always keep our eye out for limited releases form the local guys, though and stick them in the fridge as guest beers (if the staff don’t take them home first).  These don’t make it onto the menu, though so it’s always worth asking the staff what we have going on in ‘Cellar Stock.’

What is your favourite beer on the list and what Blvd dish would you pair with it?

Haha.  What time is it?  That really does vary, depending on the direction of the wind.

What am I drinking most of at the moment?  That’ll be Eagle Bay Kolsch.  I’m giving my palate a bit of a break from the big punishing IPAs and the like and the Kolsch is filling that gap nicely.  It still has enough character to keep me happy without numbing my tastebuds.  It’s dangerously morish, though.

It’s a perfect match for our Pork Cotoletta with Italian Coleslaw.  The bitterness in the Kolsch contrasts perfectly to the slight sweetness of the pork and stands up nicely to the spice of the Dijon mustard and coleslaw.

Kolsch Bottles
Eagle Bay Kolsch bottles at Eagle Bay Brewery

What can we expect from the Blvd Brews in the Beer garden Market?

Most of our favourite local producers are coming to play: Eagle Bay, Little Creatures, Mash, Cheeky Monkey and Gage Roads, along with Core Cider and Custard & Co.  The beergarden will be turned into our own mini beer festival with stalls for tasting and more.  JD from Westons Barbershop will be here to make sure all the boys (and some girls) look their smoothest and Dr Paul’s Hot Sauce is bringing the chilli.  Charlie Bucket will be playing tunes all afternoon in the beergarden.  All this along with everything you would normally expect from the Boulevard Hotel and a giveaway or two.

Is the kitchen doing any special dishes on the day?

For the month of August we ran Ribs ‘n’ Bibs where slow cooked beef ribs, Turkish bread and coleslaw were matched with our favourite beers.  The reaction to them was fantastic so chef is bringing them back for the day.  We will also have our polenta chips with a blue cheese and beer dip for something a bit more nibbly.  Our full menu will be available on the day too.

What beers are you most looking forward to trying?

Almost every brewery has said that they’re going to bring a little surprise for us.  I reckon I’m going to be like a kid in a toy store on the day.

Thank you Fi, see you Saturday!


5 Minutes with Matt from The Freo Doctor

This edition of 5 minutes with features Matt Shiel, manager of the fantastic bottleshop The Freo Doctor

5 minutes with … a 5 minute/5 question interview with great beer loving people …

This edition of 5 minutes with features Matt Shiel, manager of the fantastic bottleshop The Freo Doctor – a place not only for great craft beer but also beautiful wines and spirits. The Freo Doctor also frequently hosts booze events in their kick-ass cellar, like the recent Sou’West Smack Down.

It’s always good to know your bottle shop crew so here’s a chance to get to know Matt a little bit better … (spoiler alert, he is a top guy!)

Matt Shiel with his wife
Matt Shiel with his wife

How did you fall in love with beer?

When we opened [Little] Creatures, my little Tooheys New drinking mind nearly exploded.

Finish this sentence: “The WA beer scene needs more …

… sour beer!

What beers do you recommend the most?

That’s almost as tough as ‘What’s your favourite beer?’ At the moment, Barrow Boys Stormy Lager, Bridge Roads Fat Man Red Suit Big Sack, any Mountain Goat, Two Birds… It depends what the punter is looking for.

What can’t you keep enough of in the store?

Stone and Wood Pacific Ale, but I think that has been remedied now.


If you could import any beer right now that’s not available in Australia, what would it be and why?

Lagunitas, I fell in love with their cappuccino stout on a road trip in the States with some friends a few years ago and I need more of it in my life, and the rest of their beers are pretty rad too.